By most any measure, these are turbulent times. But results from the 14th Annual LGBTQ Community Survey offer insight into exactly what issues are most important to this population in 2020—and how that relates to their purchasing decisions.

Conducted March 14 through May 31 by Community Marketing & Insights (CMI), an LGBT marketing research firm, this year’s survey garnered 34,000 responses from 130 countries, including 17,230 self-identified LGBT people in the United States. (POZ readers were invited to participate; CMI banner ads for the survey appeared on the site and on POZ Personals.)

Data from the U.S. participants identified the following five issues as the most important to the respondents:

  • LGBT equality
  • Health care quality and costs
  • Fair elections and protection of democracy
  • Racial discrimination
  • The government’s ability to respond to the COVID-19 pandemic.

According to a CMI press release about the survey, other key finding show that the LGBT community is stressed about the upcoming elections, that corporations must communicate their support of the community, that the community felt a loss over canceled Pride events this year due to COVID-19, that LGBT people are less financially confident (notably among the Black and Latinx respondents) and LGBTQ is now the preferred term for the community (though LGBT was also viewed favorably, as was LGBTQ+).

In terms of translating this data into messages for business and corporations, CMI pointed that it’s “more important than ever” for brands to support LGBT equality, with 80% of survey participants agreeing that companies that support LGBTQ equality “will get more of my business this year.”

Brands that succeed in reaching the LGBT community, according to survey results, are Absolut, Amazon, American Airlines, Apple, Delta Air Lines, Disney/ABC, Google, Nike, Starbucks, Subaru, Target, TomboyX and Wells Fargo.

“In 2020, there are a lot of concerns on the minds of the LGBTQ community, and brands must take a stand and commit to a deeply authentic, ongoing strategy to connect and engage the LGBTQ community,” said Thomas Roth, CMI’s president, in the press release. “For brands looking to enter this market or expand their LGBTQ market share, understanding the community’s nuances through research truly provides the road map and competitive edge.”

What’s more, the survey found that LGBT people live in urban, suburban and rural areas. Even though cities may be more welcoming environments, companies trying to reach the LGBT community may miss opportunities by ignoring smaller towns and rural areas.